Brazil OKs sales of gene-altered eucalyptus


Transgenic agriculture won ground in Brazil this month, as officials there issued the world’s first approval for commercial sale of a fast-growing, genetically modified (GM) variety of eucalyptus. The approval, which some experts warn could lead to negative ecological and economic effects, was issued April 9 by Brazil’s National Technical Commission for Biosafety (CTNBio), a regulatory body of scientists drawn from government, academia, business and green groups. CTNBio voted 18 to 3 to allow FuturaGene Brasil Tecnologia, biotech arm of the Suzano Pulp and Paper Group, to sell fast-growing transgenic eucalyptus containing a gene from the plant thale cress (Arabidopsis thaliana). Brazil is the world’s biggest producer of the eucalyptus pulp that Suzano and other companies process into paper. “Our GM eucalyptus, the... [Log in to read more]

Would you like to Subscribe?